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25 December 2012
45 Years of broadcasting ends on Christmas night
Radio St Helena final broadcast on Christmas night
Tony Leo at the controls for Radio St Helena's final transmission

Darrin Henry, SHBC

On Christmas Day, Radio St Helena at Pounceys carried out its final full day of broadcasting.

Shortly after midnight former station manager Tony Leo closed the final programme and current station manager Ralph Peters then turned off the transmitters, bringing to an end 45 years of broadcasting in the medium wave for Radio St Helena.

In the final two days of Radio St Helena being on air there were many messages of thanks and well wishes from people who have listened and presented programmes over the years, both local and from abroad.

Station Manager, Ralph Peters, said: "It has been really emotional; I think that is a mild word really, because we were on air since 6.30 this morning starting up with Bert Constantine, one of our oldest producers. Then we had Stedson (Francis). Then Tony Green made a comeback with his programme, as did Ray (Matches) Williams. The calls they were having; people were really saddened we were closing down at midnight tonight. I was on air from 8 o’clock tonight – unfortunately some of my time got taken up with all the well wishes and that type of thing, and I didn’t say all that I wanted to say but it was very emotional. We also had the ex managers, Laura Lawrence and Gary Walters. Come 12 o’clock I’m going to be saddened the station is closing down, but in one sense I’m glad that it’s all over because it’s been one hell of a ride over the past two months, trying to get everything together."

As midnight approached a group of 14 people, all with connections to Radio St Helena, joined Tony Leo in the studio as he made the final goodbye.

After the medium wave transmitters were turned off, the crowd who had gathered at the station enjoyed a few drinks and snacks together. Nicholas Yon, chairman of the Radio St Helena board for the last 9 months, made a speech, thanking everyone who had contributed to the 45 years of service of Radio St Helena.

Following the closing of Saint FM last week and now Radio St Helena, SHBC is currently testing its FM network and will begin scheduled programming in the new year.

St Helena news archive December 2012



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